Tag Archives: decorating


I know that in the design world, the general advice is to decorate your home slowly, with intention. Not just filling space with whatever fits. Sometimes people wait years until they find the perfect whatever for the space that needs it. I am all for this, but here’s the thing: it’s going to be very cold for the next several months. For that reason and a few others, we needed rugs as soon as we could find ’em.

That said, I wasn’t about to spend money on rugs I didn’t like, just because they were cheap and did the job. BUT I didn’t want to spend a fortune on anything either, because 1) we’re not made of money, 2) pets are messy and 3) rugs aren’t something I’m overly picky about, at least for the most part. I didn’t necessarily set a price range for myself, just sort of trusted my gut when it told me “nah, too expensive.” I have looked at a lot of rugs both online and in person over the last few months and I’m glad to be done with it for a bit.

I knew we’d need a living room rug pretty quickly, because Enli is totally allowed on the couch and it’s hard for her to get on it without something for traction. World Market has the most amazing rug selection and when I saw this glorious jute rug online (and it was on sale!) I knew I had to see if my local store had it. They had one, and I had a coupon on top of the sale so I scored this beauty for 90 bucks.


Next up was the office. Darren had put an old blanket down so his chair wouldn’t damage the floor, which is a perfectly workable but definitely short-term solution. I’d heard great things about RugsUSA and had been spending a lot of time on their site, and finally found a rug in their Final Sale section that Darren and I both liked. It was $79, what a deal! But holy shit did I ever run in to a problem with the shipping.

Story time: I got a shipping notification and tracking number for this rug purchase on October 17, with a scheduled delivery date of the 20th. On the 20th, the tracking indicated that the rug hadn’t even been picked up by FedEx yet. I emailed customer service, who said they’d reach out to the warehouse and get back to me within 24 hours. They didn’t. So I called – I think the morning of Monday the 24th? I should’ve written this down –  and was told they’d escalate my call and contact the warehouse again, and they’d get back to me within 48 hours. They didn’t. Once the 48 hours was up I called again, and was told they couldn’t issue a refund on a item once a tracking number had been assigned (what?). But the CS agent I was speaking with did a little digging and said they had just heard back from the warehouse that they were looking into it, and she’d email me by the end of the day. And she did! The warehouse told customer service that FedEx had lost my rug, and they’d send a new one with the same tracking number. Sure enough, they sent me a rug. It was, in fact, the rug I ordered, with the original tracking label with the original shipping date of 10/17. They could very well have re-printed the shipping label, but the rug I ordered was final sale and the only one available, so… how did I end up receiving the same rug that FedEx allegedly lost?

ANYWAY we got our office rug and it was a headache but it’s a good rug so yay. *breathe*

Enli says hi.

Enli says hi.

Meanwhile, I had gotten tired of waiting for the RugsUSA debacle to be resolved and Target was having a 30% off rug sale, so I bought another one. I hemmed and hawed for a good long time, because I wanted something that could either work in the office (in case the RugsUSA one never showed) or in the guest room. I landed on this Rowena Accent Rug and while it worked fine in the office, I really dig it in the guest room. Hooray! Plus I got it for less than $60. Double hooray.


the guest room still needs a bed.

Last but not least was the bedroom. That was much trickier because of the size we’d need. 5’x8′ is too small, 8’x10′ is too big. Ultimately we knew we’d need either a weirdly-sized rug or a square one, and it would be more of a splurge than the others. I finally found this 8’6″ square shag sucker on Amazon and bought a “Used-Very Good” one available, which saved a few bucks.


still to do: different lamp, second nightstand.

We love it, the pets love it. The door juuuust clears the edge. Money well spent.

Another list item checked!


progress report

It’s starting to feel like home in here. The hard part is not draining our entire bank account to immediately purchase all the things we need. More rugs (we do have a second rug on the way though, for the office)! Miscellaneous furniture! Random little decorative things that can 100% wait!

I took a jaunt to IKEA on Sunday though, because I decided some things actually couldn’t wait. I had been planning on purchasing a KALLAX unit for the dining room, and when my attempt to hang our large LACK shelves in the living room took a horrible turn* I figured well, there’ll be plenty of room for books on the KALLAX instead. Which is not to say we won’t still hang the shelves somewhere, probably. Anyway, I sprung for the high-gloss white KALLAX, a FULLEN mirror for the downstairs bathroom, and some curtains for the side windows on the front porch (from IKEA’s Vinter 2016 line, which is amazing by the way). I’m going to have to go back though, because they also have 8 foot curtain rods which I need for the back porch, and they’re only like six bucks.

A few other things we accomplished over the weekend: I replaced the screen in the back door, we grabbed another carload of stuff from the apartment, picked up half of a dining set from Kyle and Jenna (our car isn’t big enough for the whole thing; we’ll pick up the rest soon), and I sewed a curtain for the window above our kitchen sink. Darren and I actually picked out the fabric together, which is pretty rare!

Picture time.

porch curtains

porch curtains

maybe we'll add a rug in the entry someday?

maybe we’ll add a rug in the entry someday?

view from the entry. we need a longer coffee table.

view from the entry. we need a longer coffee table.

soon there will be a table blocking this view. sparse shelves!

soon there will be a table blocking this view. sparse shelves!


we have a wizard in our bathroom.

we have a wizard in our bathroom.


There is still a handful of stuff sitting in our old apartment though. Gaaaah. We’ll pick it up this weekend. I hope we can figure out how to fit a vacuum cleaner, a full-length mirror, a large Rubbermaid container, a floor lamp, and a friggin’ car exhaust system in the back of the Forester. Good lord.

*no matter where I tried to drill into the wall for an anchor, I was hitting something before I got deep enough for the anchor to fit. I guess I wouldn’t be surprised if there was plaster and lath behind the drywall, but dang. Whatever it is I broke a drill bit on it!

almost unpacked

The move happened and it was actually pretty painless! Darren’s dad brought his trailer up and we had several friends (including Baxter favorites Kate and Mat) come help load. It ended up taking about two hours, excluding travel time between places. Not too shabby! We still have some stuff to grab from the apartment, which we’ll pick up soon.

Unpacking is, naturally, taking longer. We had a pretty insane mountain to start with.

Welcome to our beautiful home! …ugh.

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How two people can fit so much stuff into a one bedroom apartment, I’ll never know. It’s been over a week and we still have two boxes sitting in the entryway (foyer? Do we have a foyer?). Plus two in the living room that can’t really be unpacked until we have an TV stand – the old one is serving as Darren’s battle station/command center up in the office.

I got a good portion of our art and photos hung, and I bought a rug at World Market this weekend (20% off rugs + 30% Friends & Family sale = awesome deal). It’s coming together slowly but surely. The housewarming party is on the 29th so I’m sure it’ll be reasonably presentable by then.

I have a chair problem…

…or an obsession.

A good chunk of my time this weekend was spent sewing. I meant to share the results sooner, because I still don’t have pictures of everything. I’m updating now because it’s an excellent way to procrastinate on something else.

In a previous entry, I mentioned that I wanted to make a new seat and back for our director’s chair. I found the frame next to the dumpster of the building across the street and made a haphazard seat that wasn’t very functional or comfortable.

I had fabric left over from my previous upholstery project, so on Saturday I went to town.

I recently won a blog giveaway from A Certain Type of Glow which included, among other things, a discount code to SoChick‘s online shop. Using this code, I acquired a few different Amy Butler fabrics- this pillow was made from one of them. I had a full yard of this polka dot pattern, and made a lunch bag with the other half. I haven’t managed to get a photo of it yet but it is awesome.

Anyway, I made the seat of this chair the proper way so people can actually sit on it. This pleases me and kind of makes me want to rearrange the living room. Darren might actually be on board with this idea.

I have two other half-yards of different patterns, so two more pillows will be made in the future. For the couch. I’m digging this neutral-with-pops-of-bright-color thing we have going on right now.

In addition to the chair, pillow, and lunch bag, I also modified two t-shirts. Compelling!

In non-decor related news, I have a four day weekend coming up. No plans, though. Maybe I’ll spend it all playing with my shiny new phone.


I saw this TARDIS print on Darren’s Etsy favorites and added it to my own. And then he bought it for me. It now hangs in our living room, under the tree image I printed from the internet.

Also, I have a new, less ridiculous photo to the right, featuring my giant Jersey Shore style hoop earrings I found at Ragstock. They’re seriously so big I can’t wear them to work. They’re bar earrings.

there are never enough comfortable chairs

Yesterday Kate and I did a bit of shopping. Partly out of necessity. She needed some stuff, and I had been desperately wanting to replace a chair in our living room that had seen better days. I don’t have a picture of that one and I am not sorry. But here is the one I purchased:


Kate and I wrestled it into her car and went about our other errands, which included a trip to Joann’s. Kate needed fabric for a curtain, and I needed some so I could transform the 70s orange cushions of that chair into something more attractive. I grabbed a bolt of some lovely grey fabric but there didn’t end up being enough left. I found some cream-ish stuff instead, similar to Darren’s Ikea chair. The grey would’ve coordinated with the couch, but whatever.

I did run into some problems while sewing the cushions. I got pretty far along on my first one, but then the thread started snagging. Constantly. I fiddled with tension and stuff, and it would work for a little bit but then snag again.

Long story short, my machine apparently hates heavy thread. I switched to regular all-purpose stuff and had no problems at all. Ugh.

It all came together in the end though, and I am pleased with the final result.


Now I just need to try to keep it clean.

lucy approves

I have enough fabric left over, I think I’m going to re-do the director’s chair in an attempt to make it something that can hold the weight of a human. Perhaps that’ll be next weekend

Oh hey. I just realized this was number 18 in my 30 by 30. Nice!

unruly Sun, why dost thou thus through windows and through curtains call on us?

Last weekend I bought a sewing machine.

She’s very basic, but does what I need her to.

I also picked up a couple canvas drop cloths and other necessities for a project I’ve had in mind for quite some time.

New curtains.

The drop cloth idea came from the Nate Berkus Show. Truth.

After lots of cutting, pinning, and stitching over the course of the last two weekends, today I finished my new bedroom curtains.

Here is what we had before:

Just some standard thing from Target, one panel per window. I had to pin them up at the bottom because they were way too long.

Here is what we have now:

Let there be light.

I wish we had nicer blinds. Stupid rental apartment.


A couple o’ ribbon stripes, some buttoned tie-backs, and two panels per window like adults. I love them. Our bedroom is really starting to take on the earthy/natural/slightly rugged look I’ve been working toward.

Drapes for the living room are in the works. All I have to do is add the ribbon stripes (three per panel), so that won’t take long. I’ll probably finish those tonight.